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Starting a Tech Business: A Practical Guide for Anyone Creating or Designing Applications or Software by Alex Cowan

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User Stories

Tell Me a Story, I'll Make You a Product

You might have heard the terms marketing requirements document (MRD) or product requirements document (PRD). They just sound long and boring, don't they? Do you think you could get excited about writing them? Few people can. Furthermore, the idea that anyone can anticipate and document everything a product should do, toss said document over the trench to developers, and expect to have a great product a few months later is becoming less popular. A large share of the most modern tech businesses use adaptive development methodologies, often described as agile. These processes favor interaction between the developers and product designers (owners) over long documents and short cycles with incremental chunks of working software over long development cycles with bigger deliveries.

This doesn't mean you shouldn't sit down and write down as many ideas as soon as you can. Nor does it mean that more extensive documentation isn't ever something you should do before development starts, even with an MRD or PRD. The right amount and type of documentation depends on your project and team, and we review that in Chapter 6. It does mean that developers are likely to find certain structures most consumable, that you shouldn't hold up development while you're writing up said documentation, and that you should avoid being overly prescriptive. This will put you in the best possible position to benefit from the team's wisdom, and the empirical knowledge ...

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